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Over-Exposed (1956)

 |  Drama, Film-Noir  |  April 1956 (USA)
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Sexy blonde dance club girl learns the photography trade and moves to New York in pursuit of a new career.



(screen play), (screen play), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview:
Cleo Moore ...
Lily Krenshka aka Lila Crane
Russell Bassett
Isobel Elsom ...
Mrs. Payton Grange
Raymond Greenleaf ...
Max West
Shirley Thomas (as Shirley Thomas)
James O'Rear ...
Roy Carver
Donald Randolph ...
Coco Fields
Dayton Lummis ...
Horace Sutherland


Sexy blonde dance club girl learns the photography trade and moves to New York in pursuit of a new career.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

blackmail | See All (1) »


CLEO MOORE The Most EXCITING FIGURE SINCE MARILYN MONROE NUFF SAID! (original print ad - almost all caps) See more »


Drama | Film-Noir





Release Date:

April 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'arma del ricatto  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Lila appears on a New York City-based TV show aired by KXIV; in reality, all east coast TV/radio stations are prefaced by the letter W. Stations prefaced by letter K are in the west. See more »


Referenced in We Jam Econo: The Story of the Minutemen (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

Cleo Moore's demonstration of Blonde Ambition, mid-1950s style
5 July 2004 | by (Western New York) – See all my reviews

In Over-Exposed, Cleo Moore makes an ascent from B-Girl to reigning photographer of café society that's as rapid as it is unpersuasive. She's a mid-1950s version of Blonde Ambition, or, as she puts it, `Where there's money, there's Lila – green becomes me.'

She wasn't always Lila, least of all not the night the clip joint she'd just started working for got raided. The alcoholic, has-been shutterbug (Raymond Greenleaf) who snaps her mug outside the police station takes pity on her by showing her the rudiments of his craft. She's a quick study and, more to the point, a shrewd operator, buttering up monied old janes with appeals to their deluded vanity.

Off to New York, she tries in vain to land a job as a photojournalist, though she befriends a young reporter (Richard Crenna). Instead, she opts for the glamor and easy money to be had as a `flash-girl' in a nightclub; on the side, she snaps compromising photos for a sleazy columnist (James O'Rear). Soon, she holds a concession at the poshest watering-hole in town, the Club Coco; the fact that it's mob-operated doesn't bother her, but it bothers straight-arrow Crenna, who's thinking of popping the question.

Invited to snap a birthday celebration at the club for grand dame Isobel Elsom, Moore inadvertently records the dowager's death throes as she slumps while displaying her newly acquired skills at the mambo. Moore decently destroys the photo, only to have O'Rear steal and publish the negative; closing ranks, her society clients drop her like a hot brick. Up against a wall, Moore decides to dabble in blackmail, using as bait another inadvertent picture – one that demolishes the alibi of one of club's mob backers, wanted for murder....

With elements of Shakedown and the soon-to-come Sweet Smell of Success, Over-Exposed stays a little too nice to rival them. It pulls back from any real nastiness and grit in its eagerness to keep the hard cookie Moore soft at the center (and insure smiles at the ending). Still, there are smirky glimpses into the world of parasites and lick-spittles who buzz around money, as well as welcome, old-school turns from Greenleaf and Elsom. Moore flashes solid credentials as a brassy schemer, while Crenna takes yet another step in the career that would stretch, chiefly through the magic of television, from Our Miss Brooks to The Rape of Richard Beck. Over-Exposed, diverting enough to watch, is quite under-developed.

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